Q1. Many of us may be familiar with you because of your website, for those who are unfamiliar with you, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your life?
Well, I’m a designer, a freelancer and a pro-blogger. I’m a permanent resident of Singapore, citizen of Malaysia and I travel back and forth very frequently.
I’m like any designer, easily attracted to beautiful and inspirational stuff. I like travelling and photography as well.
Q2. How long have you been blogging and how (or why) did you start a blog?
Hongkiat.com is about 4 years old. It started as a personal blog, then a place where I share tips and what I have come to learn in terms of design. Today, it’s a multi authored blog publishing high quality articles related to design, web development and inspirational artworks.
Q3. What was your goal when you started blogging?
No specific goals actually, main reason I started blogging is because friends around me were already doing it and talking about it.
Q4. How much time do you need to spend daily on the upkeep of your blog… do you ever sleep or play?
I spent about 5-6 hours daily doing things related to the site; mainly checking & replying emails, experimenting new features, reading and approving posts, thinking of new ideas, discuss post related issues with authors, etc.
Other than that, my time are spent doing something else I enjoyed, e.g. watching movies, photography, shopping, reading blogs and news.
I sleep for at least 9 hours/day 🙂
Q5. You publish a lot of posts on a daily basis, where do you get your inspiration from?
I don’t publish a lot of posts on daily basis, probably 3-5 on weekly basis as each of the post are lengthy, intensive and requires a lot of research done.
Ideas for the posts are usually based and inspired by things I encountered daily. E.g., when I got myself the new iphone 4, I’d think to myself, what kind of post would I like to read about iphone 4. I’ll then start discussing these ideas with authors to see which are achievable.
Q6. What do you feel are the most important skills for a designer to have/develop?
Q7. A typical day in the life of “Hongkiat Lim”, how is it like? What do you enjoy the most about your work?
I’ll get myself a starbucks, sits down and open up Facebook. Then I’ll check the mails, try to reply as much as I can. I get a lot of mails (60-90+) everyday, so I usually allocate 2 different sessions each day, and some time over the weekend to read and reply all.
Then I’ll read the articles to be publish, discuss with my editors, and the writers. Some are done via emails, some via IM.
The rest of the day are quite dynamic, I could end up spending whole day trying to solve a code/design problem, or playing with some jQuery effect or experimenting new functions and ideas for hongkiat.com, etc.
I enjoy doing all of them!
Q8. What do you think of the web design blog niche? A lot of designers say it’s overcrowded, but many say there’s still room for new blogs and tutorial sites.
I’d say it’s a bit overcrowded right now.
Q9. If you could give a single piece of advice to people who would like to follow your steps, what would it be?
Have faith, and be consistent.
Q10. What are the tools you couldn’t live without?
It has to be my Mac, then comes Dreamweaver and Photoshop.
Q11. Do you have any favorite websites for interacting with others in the design community?
Not really, I communicate more via IM and Facebook.
Q12. What are your favorite websites at the moment?
Thank you Hongkiat for taking the time out to answer our questions. Much appreciated.